Tuesday, 24 February 2009

GNW half marathon (Blackpool)

Blackpool in February was as I expected it to be - bracing ! And deserted, apart from the 1500 hardy souls who'd made the trip for a flat, and sometimes fast, half-marathon. The course is not inspirational - 2 laps of what is basically an 'out and back' course: the 'out' leg is pancake flat, along the Lower Walk - the sea wall (see picture - that's me on the far right); the 'back' leg is along the Middle Walk - higher, and more undulating.

As it turned out, times were good - lots of PB's and season's bests - helped by the cool conditions, and the breeze which was from the side rather than being head-on.

I had a target of 1:38, aiming for 7:30/mile, so was a bit shocked to go through 1m in 7:07, but feeling good. There were RW pacers, but not at my pace, so ran with the 7min pacer in sight, but at a distance. I kept as steady as possible, but half expected to blow up in the 2nd half. However, I managed to keep it together, averaging 7:10 - 7:15 for most of the race, only slowing slightly between 10m and 12m, before putting in a 6:51 and a strong finish to end up with 1:34:25 - maybe 1:30 isn't out of the question, after all

On a fund-raising note, I managed to raise some funds off-line, which will go to maternity projects in Shyira, Rwanda - sponsoring a midwife, support of safe motherhood and funding the extension of the maternity hospital. (More details on the 'Rwanda' side of the blog). More importantly, I have received some feedback, so am raising awareness of this site, and the work of the Shyira Trust

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